The Great Gatsby (Blu-Ray Combo Pack) Review
Posted by Tony Farinella on 08.31.2013
The Great Gatsby hits Blu-Ray, but is it really all that great? Check out the full review for details!
Upon viewing the trailers from The Great Gatsby and seeing the director of the project, I knew I was in store for quite a film, to say the least. I wasnít sure if I was going to like it, but I knew it would never be boring and there would be a lot to take in visually. The cast also had a lot to offer and it just seemed like the type of film that Leonardo DiCaprio was born to play and a role that was right up his alley. Ambition has been used a lot to describe the film and I knew there would be plenty of that to go around.
I imagine everyone is familiar with the novel from some point in time in their life whether from school or just from hearing about its legacy. This 2013 version is directed by the supremely talented Baz Luhrmann, and heís definitely the right man for such a momentous project like this. A necessary yet brief plot description: Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) rents a house in New York and discovers a lifestyle and group of people that are incredibly wealthy and donít necessarily believe that less is more. His next door neighbor is the over-the-top and grand Jay Gatsby, played perfectly by Leonardo DiCaprio.
His house is one-of-a-kind and is nothing if not excessive. The more Nick learns about Gatsby and his own life for that matter, the more interesting the story becomes as all of the pieces of the puzzle are slowly revealed. The performances are universally interesting and well-performed, including work from Joel Edgerton, Carey Mulligan, and Isla Fisher. The standout, however, as one would expect is Leonardo DiCaprio. He just seems to fit right into these types of films and the performance is charming and effortless for him. He hits all the notes that are needed for the character.
When it was all said and done, I realized I had seen something special in terms of direction and the acting, but I canít say I wrapped my arms around the film or felt the need to tell everyone to see it or watch it over and over again. I watched it on Blu-Ray and it was pretty magnificent to watch and get involved in thanks to the visual aspects of the film and the performances, and I imagine it was pretty epic on the big screen. I canít imagine it would have great repeat value and itís missing something overall. I canít put my finger on it, but something is missing from it.
In the end, I was absorbed in the film but not enthralled by it. I didnít love it but I sort of liked it, kind of didnít at other points. It probably warrants another viewing to fully grasp how I felt about it, but considering itís tedious length, I canít say thatís something Iíd like to do anytime soon. I have to give props to director Baz Luhrmann for his visual flare and the amount of style and class that is displayed from him, but the film is hit and miss all throughout. Itís all over the map but when it hits, itís really something to behold.
Blu-Ray Info:The Great Gatsby is released on a two-disc Blu-Ray and DVD combo pack from Warner Brothers Home Entertainment. The digital copy is an Ultraviolet copy that can be streamed on your tablet, computer, or smart phone. Itís now available to own.
Video Info: The 1080p, 2.40:1 transfer of this film is breathtaking and incredibly beautiful. On Blu-Ray, the film truly comes alive and is a treasure and a feast for the eyes. This is one of the best, if not, the best looking Blu-Rays Iíve seen this year. Itís just about perfect.
Audio Info: The English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 is also really well done and captures the mood of the film and also the terrific soundtrack. The music in this film is out of this world and the audio track hits the right notes without shouting the soundtrack at you. Subtitles are also included in English, French, Spanish, and Portuguese.
The Greatness of Gatsby (09:14): The director talks about what inspired him to make the film in the first place and all that went into making it a reality.
Within and Without with Tobey Maguire (08:41): Tobey Maguire had a camera with him on set and captured some moments with some members of the crew.
The Swinging Sounds of Gatsby (12:17): Many of the talented musicians that added songs to the film are featured here as they talk about what they wanted to capture with their music. The music was definitely was one of the highlights of the film, no doubt.
The Jazz Age (15:43): This historic time and how it relates to the film is the focus of this special feature and itís one of my favorites on this set. Thereís some great material here.
Razzle Dazzle: The Fashion of the Ď20s (16:22): The many unique and lavish styles that are such an important part of the film get their day in court with this special feature. They worked really hard to get it right and make it look as authentic as possible.
Fitzgerald's Visual Poetry (06:55): The visual style of the film is the centerpiece of this special feature.
Gatsby Revealed: This half hour special feature is a series of mini special features all adding up to one special feature. They focus on particular scenes and how they were put together and developed.
1926 Trailer Ė The Great Gatsby
Deleted Scenes: Four deleted scenes are included here, running a little over twenty-seven minutes. They are introduced by the director. Considering the length of the film and some of my reservations, I was fine with these not being included. For hardcore Gatsby fans, they might appreciate some of the detail that is added to the film.
The 411: A film that is this well made and this well-acted is worth seeing, even if the final product is anything but perfect. There is some good here and that good is worth seeing, at least as a rental. Itís not one of my favorite films of the year and I imagine itís going to be quite polarizing with audiences. However, you need to see it yourself to gauge how you react to it and how you felt about it as a whole. Iím all over the place with it and my mind might change within the hour. There are also some great special features here, although an auto commentary would have added a ton to this Blu-Ray.